Lecture evening “Funicular railways”

On 1 November 2023, Karl-Heinz Holub gave a lecture on the subject of funicular railways.

These cable cars on rails are ropeways, but are less recognised than the spectacular aerial cableways. They are used in urban areas to access neighbourhoods on slopes, villages in higher valley locations and numerous alpine recreational areas. 

Numerous examples from Germany, Switzerland and Austria were used to illustrate the development of the wheel-rail system and the various types of drive. While two independent tracks were initially necessary, the invention of the wheel axle with two wheel flanges on one wheel and one wheel in roller form made it possible to significantly reduce the track system. In terms of drive technology, water ballast and water turbines initially provided the energy, but both were gradually replaced by the electric motor in line with the development of electricity.

Particular topics were the increase in transport capacity, passenger comfort and the automation of the railways in order to reduce personnel costs.

If you come across a funicular railway while travelling, it is well worth taking a closer look at it, as there is always a small technical marvel behind it.

The lecture evenings on various railway-related topics take place every first Wednesday at 8 pm in the Railway Museum (see calendar of events). The spectrum ranges from lectures on history and travelogues about railways in distant countries to technical presentations. Admission is free and interested listeners and speakers with exciting topics are always welcome! We ask the latter to submit and agree their topic by e-mail in advance.

The next lecture evening will take place on Wednesday, 6 December 2023. This time, the former 1st chairman of the Museumsbahn e. V. and co-founder of the railway museum, Uwe Breitmeier, will present a comfortable evening with cheerful and contemplative poems about the railway.

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